I have a facial cleft, which means that one of my eyes is lower than the other one. I’ve had three operations for it, but now it doesn’t affect me at all.
I started recognising I looked different when I was 6 or 7 years old. I thought things like “Why do I look like this?” and “Why is there no one else like me?”. I felt confused at first, but I quickly started doing much better and I feel good now.
I have never been bullied as my friends just got to know me for who I am; we have never spoken about my difference. My first year of high school has also been going really well.
Sometimes people do walk past and stare at me, some people have even poked me in the face. This is something I would really like to change through raising awareness of what it’s like to live with a visible difference.
My mum gets quite angry and can say things like “You see that Craig, they’re staring at you, you should go and say something to them!”. Sometimes I am also angry, but I am more often embarrassed and don’t feel I need to say anything.
If I feel like I need to speak to anyone about my difference I speak to my mum and the Youth Engagement Officer at Changing Faces or my pupil support teacher.
The main thing people should know about me is that I am just ordinary and that I am no different to anyone else.